We are in Milan at the corner of corso Garibaldi and via Marsala, walking around in – my personal opinion- one of the most beautiful areas of the city. Here stands proudly my favorite church ever. It is a very special example of a double-church, dedicated to the Crowned Virgin Mary (Santa Maria Incoronata). I love this church so much because it is the architectural representation of a love story.
The external particularity of this church is the double facade, so perfectly duplicated as to be called a “twin”; I remember when I first saw it, I imagined I would have found two churches also internally… but the church is actually one, duplicated in its entire space.
Originally, there was just one church, the left one, which dates back to before the Middle Ages, dedicated to the Duke of Milan. In 1461, the duke’s wife asked for a new church to be built adjacent to the first one, and asked for the new one to be identical to the one dedicated to her husband, as a sign of respect and fidelity.
That’s why the two churches became one internally and kept the two facades externally. It was magical the first time I entered this space I expected to be split and finding it to be wide open instead.
My suggestion is to get to the church from piazza XXV Aprile, take a look inside, and then continue toward Largo La Foppa just in time for happy hour.